Templeton Highs Savannah Camacho didnt have an ideal cross country season in the fall, though she capped it off with a fifth-place finish at the state meet. She was worried about life after high school.
I was stressing out, she said. I dont know where I was going at all. My mind was everywhere.
The senior can relax now. She has decided to commit to Oklahoma State on a full-ride scholarship to run cross country and track.
Camacho hopes to have a public signing on National Signing Day on Feb. 1 or shortly after.
Usually, runners ink with a college knowing that theyd have to pay part of their tuition. Not Camacho, who can just focus on running and setting records.
Like this Saturday. Shell participate in the 800-meter race at the Run for the Dream Indoor Track & Field Invitational at the Save Mart Center in Fresno. She hopes to come close to or break the 2-minute, 16.91-second state record she set in last years event.
And when spring comes, shell work on breaking her bittersweet streak of finishing second to Amy Weissenbach of Harvard- Westlake in Hollywood in the 800 at the past two CIF State Championships.
I dont have to worry about that and relax, Camacho said about her college destination. Its really nice to focus on what Im doing now and not worry about where Ill run in college.
Many colleges wanted her, even to the point of offering full-ride scholarships, which are usually reserved for sports such as football and basketball. Besides Oklahoma State, Penn State, Arkansas, Arizona, UCLA, Arizona State and Cal all made similar offers, as Stanford Weissenbachs future home and Oregon offered partial scholarships.
Camacho made official visits to Penn State and Arkansas, but Oklahoma State had a grasp on her from the beginning. Camacho admired the campus, the facilities and the coaching staff, adding, No other school compared.
Theyre very excited shes coming on board, Templeton middle-distance coach Jim Barodte said about the Cowgirls. Theyre looking to have a good solid middle-distance team with Savannah on board. They have a couple good 800 runners. Putting Savannah in that class will push her. I know the coach will know how to develop her and we expect great things from her in the coming years.
At Oklahoma State, Camacho will be coached by Dave Smith and surrounded by accomplished runners. One of them is Natalja Piliusina, who lost by one one-hundredth of a second to Oregons Anne Kesselring in the 800 of last years NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
But before then, Camacho will focus on Weissenbach.
The two have been battling for the states top spot in the 800 the past two years, with Weissenbach being the winner both times. Last year, Weissenbach made it a solo race by turning in a time of 2:02.04, which broke a three-year-old national prep record by 0.86 seconds and was faster than any college time at that point. Camacho came in at 2:07.84.
Camacho is determined to beat Weissenbach, even if it doesnt happen this year. In fact, the two will likely see ech other in college, so there will be opportunities for multiple rematches in the future.
Were nice to each other, Camacho said, but when were on the track, its pure competition.
Thanks to Oklahoma State, she can just focus on that.